Act 833 of 2014 – Alternative Pathways for Grade Promotion and Graduation
Act 833 establishes alternative pathways for grade promotion and graduation for students with disabilities who have not passed standardized tests or met local requirements for promotion. This shift in policy is a monumental departure from Louisiana being among the states with the most stringent and restrictive policies for grade promotion and graduation to Louisiana joining many states in recognizing the role a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) should have in determining student outcomes.
School systems are preparing for changes that will go into effect this school year. Parents of students with disabilities are asked to work with their school system to ensure as many students as possible are able to benefit from changes to their IEPs in the first 30 days of school. There are not any state requirements for promotion in the 2014-2015 school year (i.e., no high stakes test performance requirements for 4th and 8th grades). Therefore, the focus of Act 833, alternative pathways, will be on students who need consideration to earn credits toward graduation.
Rules will be promulgated to guide the implementation of Act 833. Stakeholders will continue advocating to ensure the rules reflect the intent and spirit of Act 833. To join in the advocacy efforts for this and other issues related to students with disabilities, click here. The Special Education Advisory Panel (SEAP) will meet on Monday, August 4 to make recommendations for the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) regarding policy changes related to alternative pathways for some students with disabilities to be promoted or graduate as indicated by Act 833. For information on this meeting, click here.